Uddhav Thackeray, the President of Shiv Sena (UBT), addressed a gathering at a book publication event in South Mumbai, where he reflected on his party’s long-standing history and recent political shifts. Thackeray highlighted the enduring nature of Shiv Sena’s ideology and commented on various issues of national importance.
Thackeray began by acknowledging his party’s lengthy association with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), spanning over three decades. He emphasized that if Shiv Sena had not adopted the BJP’s ideology during this extended partnership, it would not easily transition to the Congress merely by aligning with them.
Discussing the ongoing political landscape, Thackeray expressed his optimism in the Indian judicial system. He mentioned, “The Supreme Court is moving as per the law. That is the only hope left,” and expressed confidence that Chief Justice Chandrachood would uphold the principles of democracy and rule of law.
Addressing the state of the media, Thackeray criticized the Fourth Estate, suggesting that it had been weakened over time. He urged the media to critique but avoid causing harm with their comments.
Thackeray raised concerns about the government’s approach, claiming it was biased and called for equality before the law before implementing a Common Civil Code. He also voiced disapproval that investigations initiated by Shiv Sena had seemingly yielded no results.
Emphasizing that Shiv Sena had left the BJP but not Hindutva, Thackeray explained that their definition of Hindutva aligns with the principles propagated by Prabodhankar (K S) Thackeray, which had remained unchanged over generations.
Regarding the Shiv Sena (Shinde faction), Thackeray humorously remarked, “It was the grace of the Election Commission that they didn’t give the Uddhav Thackeray name to them,” and argued that the Election Commission lacks the authority to assign a party’s name to others.
He credited Sharad Pawar for making him Chief Minister and noted the public’s acceptance of his leadership.
Sharad Pawar, who shared the dais with Thackeray, criticized the timing of the declaration of the inauguration date for the Ram Mandir. He emphasized that the main issue remains the governance and indicated that issues like the Ram Mandir might not be as effective in addressing the nation’s concerns.
Pawar dismissed the notion of Mumbai being separated from Maharashtra and assured that it would not occur. MPCC Chief Nana Patole, also present at the event, commented on the fear of the Enforcement Directorate (ED, an Indian law enforcement agency) and how it has impacted invitations for political gatherings.